This is a look at Sven and Sigrid Berg Haugen Johnson along with their Parents, Siblings, and Children. I hope that this web page can become a collection of information and a resource for family and friends. I plan to update, and/or, correct this page as new information is discovered. Thanks for your help.

Eugene (Gene) D. Johnson (son of Ellsworth, grandson of Iver and Anna Ryan and great grandson of Sven and Sigrid Berg Haugen Johnson)
This page was last updated July 29, 2004

This page will look at Frank Wittler (c.a. 1806) father of Caroline (1840 - mother of Anna Ryan Johnson). Anna (Agnes - 1877) was the mother of Ellsworth and grandmother of Eugene Johnson.

1. Frank Wittler (ca. 1806 – 1895) m. Barbara (ca. 1809 – 1871)
1.1. Margaret
1.2. Frank (1832 - ?) m. Mary Weibel Dankey (1838 – 1910)
1.2.1. Joseph (1868 - ?) m. Marge Malin
1.2.2. Anne (1869 - ?) m. James Ward
1.2.3. Frank J. (1874 – 1954) m. Emma Barbara Webber
1.2.4. William (1876)
1.2.5. George (1879 – 1964) m. Amelia (Molly) Olk
1.3. Caroline (1840 – 1907) m. William Ryan (1836 – 1903)
1.3.1. Rose (1865) . Milligan
1.3.2. George (1867)
1.3.3. Elizabeth (1869) m. Quigley
1.3.4. Katherine (1871) m. Filter
1.3.5. Mary (1873)
1.3.6. Sarah (1875)
1.3.7. Agnes (Anna) (1877 – 1954) m. Iver Johnson
1.3.8. Joseph (1879)
1.3.9. William (1882)
1.4. George m. Helen Elbert
1.4.1. Mary m. Frank Stadler
1.4.2. Francis m. Estelle Morre
1.5. Charles
1.6. Rosa
1.7. Elizabeth (1847 - 1934) m. Simon Elbert (1850 - 1925)
1.7.1. Lena (c.a. 1872 - 1937) m. Frank Elbert (? - 1944)
1.7.2. William m. Martha Louch m. Susan Fandel
1.7.3. Mary (c.a. - c.a. 1898) m. Frank Elbert (? - 1944)
1.7.4. Margaret m. David Albee m. Rudolph Hardmeier
1.7.5. Henry m. Eva Fluery
1.8. Lena
1.9. Joseph

The following article was written by Lois Nance:


Simon Elbert was born February 25, 1850, the oldest of 15 children of Joseph and Crescentia Gulder Elbert. He was born at Woodford County in a log house that formerly was a hog stable. The furniture was logs cut to the proper heights. Winters were cold, with many mornings the family awakened to find their beds covered with snow. Joseph was a farmer.

Crescentia tended her large garden to feed the growing family. Balsam was grown and when it was the right size, the fruit was placed in a bottle where it grew until ripe. It was then picked from the vine and alcohol was poured into the bottle. This made a healing salve for the family.

Crescentia Gulder was born in Ingolstadt, Bavaria, Germany. She came with her parents, Kasper and Crescentia Gulder and brother Joseph and sister Maria to America in 1847. They settled for a time in Buffalo, New York.

In the mean time Fabian, Helena, Joseph, and Simon Elbert had decided to flee from the government oppression of (Haibach) Bavaria, Germany. They came to America in 1849 and settled in Buffalo, New York also.

Joseph was working in a brewery when he met and married Crescentia. He had holes in his shoes and a ring borrowed from the housekeeper of the priest.

Shortly after, the Guilder and Elbert families all came to Illinois, in late 1849 they settled around the Metamora area.

Times were hard. One daughter was deaf as the result of Spotted Fever and attended school in Jacksonville, Illinois. Another son died at the age of 14. And still another daughter died shortly after birth.

About 1870, the family moved to Livingston County and resided there for 6 years. They then decided to move back to Woodford County. All, that is, except young Simon. He had met Elizabeth, Whittler and they were married December 4, 1870. They resided south of Chatsworth for one year and then moved to Saunemin Township on a farm where they lived the next 29 years. Simon also bought livestock to supplement the family income.

Elizabeth was born in Baden, Germany, March 1, 1847, a daughter of Frank and Barbara Whittler. Her father served in the German army for 12 years, 6 years of which time he was a captain. The parents and nine children came to America in 1848. Family lore said young George, a very active little boy, fell overboard the ship on the way over and had to be rescued. The family spent a short time in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania before coming to Illinois, first to Putnam County, then to Livingston.

Simon and Elizabeth were the parents of five children: Lena, William, Mary, Margaret, and Henry. Lena married Frank Elbert after Mary’s death. William married Martha Louch, and after her death, married Susan Fandel. Mary married Frank Elbert and died at the age of 22 years after giving birth to her third child. Margaret married David Albee, and after his death, married Rudolph Hardmeier. Henry married Eva Fluery.

Simon and Elizabeth retired to the village of Saunemin and Simon died there April 25, 1925. Elizabeth then moved to Chatsworth and lived by herself for awhile but eventually stayed with her children until her death July 25, 1934.

My grandmother was Mary Elbert who married Frank Elbert, a farmer. Her death left three young children – Lester, Pearl, and Frank. Her sister took over the job of raising the children as her own and some years later married Frank. Frank and Lena lived in Thornton, Iowa for 2 years before coming back to Livingston County. There daughter, Susie was born there. Family folklore states that if the last child is a girl and is named Susie, there will be no more. And so it was with Lena and Frank.

Lena was the midwife of the neighborhood as well as the family. I have met many people that have told me that she had delivered them or their children. Lena died April 14, 1937. Frank died December 27, 1944. Lester, my father, married Myrtle Shockey, Pearl never married, Frank married Ella Coleman and Susie married Ernest Brauman.

Myrtle and Lester Elbert lived in Ford County for six years. Rosemary was born there. Mon was helping shuck corn by hand the day before she made her appearance. They then moved to Livingston County on a farm which was the Bell estate. They remained there until they retired. Lois was born a few years later and then Janet joined the family. Rosemary married Ray Maurer, Lois married John Nance and Janet married Earl Weakman. Myrtle and Lester bought a pretty little place in the country for their retirement and enjoyed their garden, flowers, and fruit trees. Lester died December 1, 1979 and Myrtle died January 5, 1986.

John and Lois Nance live on the farm formerly owned by Lester Elbert. They have lived there 37 years. John loves to fish in his spare time and Lois is into genealogy. They have two daughters. Connie married Scott Wait and they have four children: Colette, Michelle, Cory and Mindy. Peggy married Jerry Austman and they have two children: Jeffery and Gina. Both families live in Forest, Illinois.

The following is the obituary of Mary Weibel (Dankey) Wittler (1838 - 1910).

Mrs. Mary Wittler, mother of Joseph Dankey of this city, passed away Sunday morning at ten o’clock at her home in Humphrey after an illness of about ten days. The immediate cause of her death was diabetes …

Mrs. Mary Wittler was born 1838 and was 72 years of age at her death. She was born in Switzerland and was united to Joseph (Doenje) Dankey to which union two children were born, one of whom still survives her. She came to the United States in 1871 together with her son, Jos., and daughter, Mrs. James Ward, who passed away last year at her home near Humphrey. They first located in Illinois where she married to Frank Wittler …

Her brother, A.M. Weibel of Jonesboro, Ark,;
Jas. Ryan, Pilger;
Wm. Ryan, Pilger;
and Mrs. R.A. Filter, Gregory, S.D.,
attended the funeral.

The following article on George A. Wittler was published in the 1915 publication "PAST AND PRESENT OF PLATTE COUNTY NEBRASKA"


George A. Wittler, a retail liquor merchant of Cornlea and also conducting an insurance agency, was born in Chatsworth, Illinois, March 30, 1879, his parents being Frank and Mary (Weibel) Wittler. His father was a native of Germany, while the mother's birth occurred in Switzerland, but in early life they came to the new world and were married in Chatsworth, Illinois. They began their domestic life upon a farm in that district and in fact Mr. Wittler became identified with agricultural pursuits near Chatsworth almost immediately after reaching the new world. His entire life was devoted to the work of the fields and he remnined in Illinois until 1880, when he removed to Stanton County, Nebraska, becoming owner of one hundred and sixty acres of land upon which he spent his remaining days, his death there occurring in 1886. His widow continued on the old homestead for eighteen years or until 1904, when she Went to Humphrey, where she passed away August 7, 1910.

George A. Wittler attended school in Stanton County, Nebraska, and was also a pupil in tlie parochial schools of Humphrey. He received good business training on the old homestead farm and worked for his mother there until he attained his majority, when he rented the place and engaged in farming on his own account for four years. He was afterward employed for eighteen months as bartender at Creston, Nebraska, by John Mattheissen and in like capacity was employed for two and one-half years by George N. Smith, of Humphrey. He then entered into partnership with Mr. Smith, since which time the business has been conducted under the firm style of Smith & Wittier. He owned and conducted a pool hall in Humphrey until 1914 and then went to Columbus, where he was employed by Christ Wunderlich until 1915. On the 1st of May of that year he removed to Cornlea and opened a retail liquor store, which he still conducts. He is also agent for the Farmers Mutual Insurance Company of Lincoln and for the Security Mutual Company of that city.

On the 7th of January, 1909, Mr. Wittler was united in marriage to Miss Mollie 0lk, her father being Jacob 0lk, a sketch of whom appears on another page of this work. They now have two children, namely: Jacob, who was born December 11, 1909; and Sedona, whose birth occurred August 20, 1911. The parents are members of the Catholic church and Mr. Wittler gives his political support to the democratic party.

The following articles on the Wittler family and specificaly on Frank J. Wittler (1874 - 1954) and his brother George A. Wittler (1879) appeared in the 100 th. anniversary publication of the St. Francsis Catholic Church in Humphry, NE.


The Wittler Family goes back to the European countries of Germany and Switzerland. Frank Wittler (1832 - 1886) was born in Germany and came to this country in early life. Mary Weibel (Dankey) (1838 - 1910) was born in Switzerland and also came to this country in early life. They were married at Chatsworth, Illinois. There they farmed until 1880 when they came to Stanton County in Nebraska. They bought 160 acres which they farmed. But Frank died in 1886 on his farm. Mary stayed on the farm for 18 more years and then came to Humphrey, NE in 1904 where she died on August 7, 1910.

Two of their sons lived with their families in the Humphrey area and attended St Francsis Church. These were Frank J. and George A. Wittler.

Frank J. Wittler was born on August 4, 1874 at Chatsworth, Illinois, and moved with his family to Stanton County in Nebraska in 1880, where he received his education.

He married Emma Barbara Weber on February 14, 1900, at St. Francsis. She was born on February 21, 187? the daughter of William Weber and Mary Pott. William Weber was born along the Rhine River in Germany on March 8, 1840, the son of Frank Weber, a cooper by trade. After serving 3 years in the German army, he came to this country, settling at Sterling, Illinois, where he married Mary Pott in 1873. She was the daughter of Jacob and Catherine Pott, born in Germany, who came to the United States in 1853. It was on this voyage that their daughter Mary was born In 1885, William and Mary Weber came to Humphrey and bought 240 acres one mile east of Humphrey.

Frank and Emma Wittier lived in the Humphrey community the rest of their lives. Emma was the first President of the Altar Society in 1922, which later became known as the Christian Mothers Society. She died on August 29,1944, and Frank died on May 30,1954, they are buried at St. Francis.

They were the parents of 7 children:

1) Mary GERTRUDE, born January 12, 1901.
2) Agnes Ann, born April 22, 1903.
3) Genevieve, born May 22,1909; married Henry Niemeyer June 18,1935, at St. Francis.
4) Clarence Joseph, born March 8,1911; died May 8,1981; buried at St. Francis.
5) Helen Ann, born November 7,1912; lives at Mory's Haven in Columbus.
6) Waldine Jacob, born July 22,1916; married Rita Lirass September 27,1952, at Los Angeles.
7) Kathlyn Charlotte, born July 26, 1918; married John D. Keogh February 7,1943, at Eagle Rock, California.

George A. Wittler was born on March 30, 1879, at Chatsworth, Illinois, and came to Stanton County in Nebraska in 1880. He received his education there and also at St. Francis, he farmed the home place till he was of age and then rented it for 4 years. He then took a job for ayear and a half as a bartender in Creston, with another two and a half years in a similar job in Humphrey.

He married Molly Olk (Amelia) on January 7,1909. She was born on March 29, 1892, the daughter of Jacob Olk and Lydia Rustermyer. Jacob was born in Germany on October 12, 1859, the son of Nicholas and Angela Olk. Jacob came to America in 1884 and settled at Carroll, Iowa. After a year as a farmhand, he went to Earling, Iowa, for two years as a farm laborer, and then worked a year near Council Bluffs in the same work. Two years later he went to Pilger, Nebraska, where he set up a blacksmith shop. In 1901, he came to Cornlea, where he opened a hardware and implement store. His wife, Lydia, was the daughter of John Rustermyer and Charlotte Swebach, natives of Holstein, Germany. The family came to this country and lived in Wisconsin for a time and then moved to Stanton County in Nebraska and farmed.

George and Molly conducted a pool hall in Humphrey until 1914, moved to Columbus for a year and on May 1, 1915, opened up a retail liquor store in Cornlea George also was agent for Farmers Mutual Insurance and Security Mutual, both of Lincoln.

We have no records of their deaths and burials.

They were the parents of 5 children:

1) Jacob Francis, born December 14,1909; married Christina Helen Wiese July 28, 1940, at Lindsay; lives in Union City, California.

2) Agnes SEDONA, born August 20, 1911; married Cyril J. Lachnit (Cir) June 29, 1932, at cornlea; died October 12, 1980; burried at St. Francis. Cyril lives in Humphrey.

3) William L., born May 4, 1917.

4) Emma Verla, born January 8, 1919; married Lawrence W. Balirn July 6, 1948, at Watesville, California.

' 5) Elna Mary, born February 26, 1924.

The following is the obituary for Frank J. Wittler (1874 – 1954).


Frank Wittler, long time resident of this community, passed away at the Sexton Nursing Home in Kearney, on Sunday, May 30, following a heart attack.

Funeral services were held on Wednesday morning at 9 o’clock at St. Francis Church with Rev. Fr. Egbert Huster, O.F.M., officiating at the requiem High Mass and at the services held at the parish cemetery where interment was made.

Active pallbearers were: J.J. Weidner, Arnold Lachnit, Jos. Fassbinder, S.M. Fehringer, Ed Schaecher, and Jos. Krebs.

Honorary paulbearers were: Henry Albracht, Fred Lohaus, John Steffes, Nick Steffes, Henry Machmuller, and J.A. White.

A son of Frank and Mary Weibel Wittler, the deceased was born at Chatsworth, Illinois, on August 4, 1874. He spent this boyhood days in that community.

It was on February 14, 1900 that he was united in marriage to Emma Barbara Weber, daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Webber, pioneer residents of this community. They spent a number of years on a farm in Stanton County, near Columbus and in this community, and when he retired from farm life followed the carpenter trade. Mrs. Wittler passed away on August 29, 1944, and until he entered the nursing home he made his home with his daughter, Helen, and son, Clarence.

He is survived by five daughters and two sons. They are: Mrs. Vern Lewis, of this city; Mrs. Blair Stewert, Salina, Kansas; Mrs. Henry Niemeyer, Albion; Miss. Helen Wittler, of this city; Mrs. John Keogh, Ft. Omaha; Waldine Wittler, Lancaster, California; And Clarence J. Wittler, of this city.

He is also survived by one brother, George Wittler of Watsonville, California; 17 grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Anna Ryan was born at Chatsworth, Illinois, January 17, 1877. In 1882, at age 5, She moved with her family to Stanton County. She attended school district 7 and then Wayne State Normal College after which she taught school 7 seven years in Stanton County rural schools.

The following picture shows her receiving her teaching deploma from Wayne State College. The first picture was taken at "Cravaen (studio)" Wayne, Nebraska. The caption is: Anna Ryan, Teachers Class, August 12, 1896, (age 19) Wayne, Nebraska. Then a signature: Mrs Wm. Ryan.

The second picture was taken at Marcy studio, Norfolk, Nebraska, and is with Iver. The caption says July 4, 1902, Norfolk, Nebraska. However, it also says Iver Johnson & wife Anna A. Ryan. This date conflicts with a marriage date of January 30, 1905. Also, it looks like a ring on her finger in the picture so maybe the caption date is wrong and it should be after the wedding in 1905.

There were three children in the Iver Johnson family, Clifford, Ellsworth and Ivera. The following pictures show the family. The caption on the second picture says: "Johnson family taken 1912 at Norfolk. I haven't been able to identify the car. I notice it is a right hand drive. It looks like Clifford is in front and Ellsworth in the back. How about those hats! The last picture of Anna, Clifford, Ellsworth, and Ivera is priceless!!!

The following obituary for Anna Ryan Johnson appeared in the June 17, 1954 edition of the Stanton Register.


Requiem mass was said at St. Peters Catholic church this morning for Mrs. Anna Johnson, 77, over seventy-year resident of Stanton County.

Mrs. Johnson passed away in a Norfolk hospital…

Pallbearers were Harold Sanders, Charles Busch, Ed Ackerman, Reuben Dickenson, John Morfeld, and Anton Drahota. Interment was in the Stanton Cemetery.

Born at Chatsworth, Ill. On January 17, 1877, the daughter of William and Caroline Ryan.

The family moved to Stanton County in 1882 where Mrs. Johnson had lived since. She attended school district seven and after attending Wayne State Normal returned to teach in this county’s rural schools for seven years.

On January 30, 190-5, she was married to the late Iver Johnson…

Survivors include: a daughter, Mrs. Leonard Morfeld (Ivera) of Langley Field, Va,; two sons, Ellsworth and Clifford, both Stanton County farmers; a sister, Mary Ryan of Omaha; and nine grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, four sisters and two brothers.